Michigan oil spill won't likely threaten Lake Michigan
A broken pipeline in Michigan has created a 25 mile-long oil slick on the Kalamazoo River, leading U.S. Senator Russ Feingold to call it the worst oil spill in the Midwest.
Feingold says he'll make sure that the federal response to Monday's pipeline burst keeps the hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil from getting into Lake Michigan. The Kalamazoo River empties into Lake Michigan.
EPA on-scene coordinator Ralph Dollhopf says the leak is not a threat to Lake Michigan. He also says Enbridge faces possible enforcement action. Dollhopf says the EPA is watching Enbridge's response very closely to ensure the company has the will to clean up the spill. He adds the federal government has the ability to fine Enbridge if the company doesn't comply.
Dollhopf says it will take weeks or months to clean up this spill. The leak has forced 30 to 50 homes near Marshall in southern Michigan to be evacuated because benzene has contaminated the air.
At a news teleconference Thursday, Enbridge CEO Patrick Daniel apologized for the spill.
Enbridge, which has a facility in Superior, just finished a new pipeline across Wisconsin connecting Superior to Chicago.